Guest speakers at the fifth annual commencement ceremony of the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani (AUIS) | May 28, 2016.
Dr. Choman Hardi - Chair of AUIS English department (Master of Ceremony)
Dr. Esther Mulnix - Acting President and Vice President of Academic Affairs
Dr. Yousif Goran - Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research (KRG)
Dr. Barham Salih - Founder and Chairman of the AUIS Board of Trustees
Ambassador Francis J. Ricciardone - President of The American University in Cairo
Tebeen Seerwan Ibrahim - Undergraduate Valedictorian
Martin Zaki Deeb - MBA Valedictorian
Chair of AUIS English Department
Dr. Hardi is assistant professor and chair of the English department at AUIS. She is also the founding director of the AUIS Center for Gender and Development Studies.
She was born in Sulaimani and lived in Iraq and Iran before seeking asylum in the UK in 1993. Hardi was educated in the universities of Oxford (BA, Philosophy and Psychology), London (MA, Philosophy) and Kent (PhD, Mental health). She was awarded a scholarship from the Leverhulme Trust to carry out her post-doctoral research about women survivors of genocide in Kurdistan-Iraq. The resulting book, Gendered Experiences of Genocide: Anfal Survivors in Kurdistan-Iraq (Ashgate, 2011), was chosen by the Yankee Book Peddler as a UK Core Title. It was translated into Turkish by Avesta publishing in 2013. Read more.
Acting President and Vice President for Academic Affairs
Dr. Esther Mulnix joined the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani in August 2014 as the vice president for academic affairs (VPAA) and professor of social sciences. Currently, she holds the office of the Acting President of the University. Before joining AUIS, Dr. Mulnix was professor and VPAA at CETYS University System in Baja California, Mexico.
Dr. Mulnix led the institution through the U.S. regional accreditation process with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) and was successful in helping CETYS University become accredited in February 2012. She also led the university system through international program accreditation, the College of Business Administration received ACBSP accreditation in May 2014. Read more.
Dr. Yousif Goran is the Minister of Higher Education and Scientic Research for the Kurdistan Regional Government. He obtained a bachelor's degree in law from Baghdad University in 1990 and his masters degree from Koya University in 2007 followed. He was awarded PhD in Law from Sulaimani University in 2010.
Dr. Goran's career path was mainly in legal advice, academic lecturership and research. He has previously served as university lecturer as well as Head of Department of Law and Political Science.
Dr. Goran focuses his research in the area of constitutional law, in particular constitution for multicultural societies.
Founder and Chairman of the AUIS Board of Trustees
Barham A. Salih is the founder of the American University of Iraq, Sulaimani. He is a veteran Iraqi Kurdish politician with years of public service and leadership in both the Kurdistan Region and in Iraq.
Dr. Salih served as Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Region from 2009-12. He was elected to a leadership role at the first conference of the Political Union of Kurdistan (PUK) party after the liberation of Kurdistan from dictatorship in 1992, and was also chosen to head the PUK office in the United States. Read more.
Ambassador Francis J. Ricciardone
President of The American University in Cairo
Tebeen Seerwan Ibrahim
Tebeen Seerwan Ibrahim is a Business Administration graduate with a concentration in Management and a minor in Information Technology. Throughout his four years at AUIS, he has been actively engaged with university and professional development activities. Tebeen is a firm believer in the transformational possibilities of technology, business and science.
He is inspired by real entrepreneurs and innovators that make the world a better place. During his time at AUIS, Tebeen participated in the nine month long AUIS Mentorship Program, was the photo-editor of AUIS Voice, and volunteered for Sulaimani Forum, AUIS Initiative Week, and AUIS Research Symposium. He is currently a researcher at the Center for Informatics and Data Analytics (CIDA) at AUIS. Tebeen recently founded the Business, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Club, the business department’s first official student club. The club serves to promote the notion of entrepreneurship, idea-creation, startups and creativity.